44CW – Investigation of mechanisms of radiation resistance in advanced patient derived models of glioblastoma

Status: Available
Intern:
Faculty Name: Christopher D. Willey, MD, PhD
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Radiation Oncology
Campus Address: 2232C HSROC (Building 176F)
Telephone Number: (205) 996-4417
Email: cwilley@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 3 or more
CCC Research Area: Neuro-Oncology
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 3
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Patricia Hicks
2. Joshua Anderson
Title of Project: Investigation of mechanisms of radiation resistance in advanced patient derived models of glioblastoma
Project Description:

Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and deadly primary brain malignancy. Despite standard of care therapy of maximal safe surgical resection, fractionated radiation treatment and temozolomide chemotherapy, the median overall survival of GBM is only 15 months after diagnosis. These tumors cannot be fully resected and they display both intrinsic and acquired resistance to radiation and temozolomide. For several decades, preclinical radiation research relied on immortalized cancer cell lines grown in high growth conditions (e.g., serum-containing media) which is much different than the tumor microenvironment in GBM patients where tumors develop in relatively harsh growth conditions. Unfortunately, these established cancer cell lines tend to be poor predictors of patient tumors. As such, my lab utilizes a variety of advanced patient-derived models of cancer including patient-derived xenografts (PDX) in mice, spheroid culture, and 3D bioprinted tumor models which better recapitulate the in vivo condition. Moreover, we have characterized a panel of GBM PDX which represent the spectrum of patient tumor biology including groups of tumors that are inherently sensitive to radiation and temozolomide with others displaying inherent resistance. We have also developed acquired resistance models through in vivo selection with either radiation or temozolomide treatment in mouse models. We have performed next generation sequencing and kinomic profiling of these tumors and now have potential targets for overcoming therapy resistance. A summer CARES project will involve either 1) a virtual experience involving in silico examination of molecular and phenotype data for identifying signatures of sensitivity or resistance; or 2) Wet lab experience involving therapeutic testing of spheroid and 3D bioprinted models if in person training is allowed this summer. Ideal candidate would have some experience with either basic cell biology techniques including cell culture or some experience with coding, particularly R or Python.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 6, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
More than 1 day per week (prior to start of the internship, gain appropriate waivers and approvals for the student to be on site)
Category of Project: Laboratory Research
Cancer topic: Brain
Does this project involve human subjects: No
Does this project involve animal subjects: Yes
Duty:
1.

Maintain an up to date electronic lab notebook on LabArchives including log files to highlight activities, notes, protocols, and data

2.

Become familiar with model systems and lab practices. This will occur through training by Dr. Willey, Dr. Anderson, graduate students and lab manager, Patricia Hicks

3.

Prepare data summary/writeup related to work performed

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Computer and printer, Laboratory work bench space, Supplies needed to complete project, Equipment needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Animal Research, Cell Biology, Computer Programming, Laboratory Skills, basic knowledge, Laboratory Skills, advanced knowledge, Molecular Biology, Neurosciences, Scientific Writing Skills, Statistics and Data Management, basic knowledge

43GR – Health Services Research Internship 2

Status: Filled – Rachel Frazier
Intern: Rachel Frazier
Faculty Name: gabrielle-rocque-43
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Medicine
Campus Address: 1824 6th Avenue S.
Telephone Number: (205) 975-2914
Email: grocque@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 3 or more
CCC Research Area: Cancer Control & Population Science
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 6
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Stacey Ingram
2. Nicole Caston
Title of Project: 43GR –
Project Description:

The student will participate in two projects:

1. Evaluating clinical trial participation: One student will work on a series of projects related to improving representation of diverse populations in clinical trials. This will include (1) refining patient materials about the importance of representation of diverse population in clinical trials, (2) developing a policy brief to share with key stakeholders on results from our large database analysis on patients who are traditionally well-represented, underrepresented, and unrepresented in clinical trials, (3) conducting in depth chart review of whether patients were eligible and/or offered a clinical trial during their treatment at UAB, and (4) assist with literature review for manuscript preparation. They will also participate in discussions about analysis and dissemination or results.

2. Implementation of patient-reported outcomes: The student will participate in a research project that evaluated a large-scale implementation of patient-reported outcomes as part of standard of care. The student will take field notes during meetings, participate in qualitative analysis of interviews regarding barriers and facilitators to implementation, and assist with literature review for manuscript preparation. If the student has an analytic background, they will have the opportunity to participate in the quantitative evaluation of the implementation.

The student will gain experience in different types of health services for patients and the nuances of conducting research.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 27, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
0 – project will be fully virtual except for the required in-person checkpoint visits
Category of Project: field or analytic
Cancer topic: Multiple Cancer Sites
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Abstract charts

2.

Take field notes

3.

Conduct literature review

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Computer and printer, Supplies needed to complete project, Equipment needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: NONE OF THE ABOVE (just the willingness to learn)

42PK – RNA regulator tristetraprolin in macrophages and its role in promoting glioblastoma progression through modulation of the tumor microenvironment

Status: Available
Intern:
Faculty Name: Peter H. king
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Neurology
Campus Address: 545 Civitan
Telephone Number: (120) 593-4212
Email: phking@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 1
CCC Research Area: Cancer Biology & Immunology
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 3
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Peter King
2. Peter King
Title of Project: RNA regulator tristetraprolin in macrophages and its role in promoting glioblastoma progression through modulation of the tumor microenvironment
Project Description:

Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common central nervous system malignancy and is treatment resistant with a median survival of only 15 months. Treatment resistance centers on the tumor’s remarkable ability to manipulate the microenvironment in which it exists, including suppression of anti-tumor immune responses and induction of factors that support maintenance of the tumor itself, including the therapy resistant brain tumor initiating cells (BTICs) also known as glioma stem cells. Major facilitators of these tumor promoting pathways are glioma-associated microglia and macrophages (GAMs) which comprise 30-50% of the cellular content of GBM. Through crosstalk with glioma cells, the molecular signature of GAMs is shaped to promote tumor progression through the production of cytokines such as IL-6, TGF-β, and VEGF which sustain BTICs and promote angiogenesis and invasion or through membrane-based proteins like PD-L1 which suppress anti-tumor T cell responses. A common regulatory thread for many of these GAM-derived factors is at the mRNA level where AU-rich elements (ARE) in the 3’ untranslated region (UTR) modulate mRNA stability, translational efficiency, and ultimately protein expression. We have recently determined that tristetraprolin (TTP), an RNA binding protein that binds to AREs, is highly expressed in GAMs, especially in perivascular niches where BTICs reside. We hypothesize that TTP modulates the expression of key factors that promote tumor growth, including maintenance of BTICs, immunosuppression, and treatment resistance. We have a TTP knockout mouse (specifically for GAMs) that will be the focus of this project to determine its role in GBM progression. The project will involve in vitro cell culture experiments with glioma cells and in vivo intracranial tumor models using the TTP knockout mouse. The summer student will learn a wide range or experimental techniques and approaches as well as the opportunity to work with the Neurooncology research group. Our long term objective is to gain a mechanistic understanding of how ARE-mediated post-transcriptional regulation in GAMs modulates GBM growth such that new therapies can be developed. The immunosuppressive microenvironment in GBM, for example, remains a major impediment to successful immunotherapies such as checkpoint inhibitors and CAR-T. The innovation of this proposal is its investigation of post-transcriptional regulation as a novel pathway in GAMs that is critical for glioma/GAM crosstalk.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 27, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Not very flexible, intern MUST be at work on certain days of the week and at certain times of the day (as may be necessary to interview patients, attend lab meetings, process samples, etc.) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
More than 1 day per week (prior to start of the internship, gain appropriate waivers and approvals for the student to be on site)
Category of Project: Animal Research
Cancer topic: Brain
Does this project involve human subjects: No
Does this project involve animal subjects: Yes
Duty:
1.

Assist with working with genetic knockout mouse models–breeding, genotyping, intracranial cancer inductions and imaging

2.

Assist with tissue preparation and immunohistochemistry and imaging

3.

assist with biochemical assays including western blots, qPCR, ELISA

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Laboratory work bench space, Supplies needed to complete project, Equipment needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Animal Research, Infectious agents and cancer, Molecular Biology, Pathology

41JH – Yeast phenomic analysis of a metabolism-specific growth-arresting P53 variant

Status: Available
Intern: Katie Sage Jordan
Faculty Name: john-louis-hartman
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Genetics
Campus Address: 720 20th St S, RM 702, Kaul Genetics Building
Telephone Number: (205) 996-4195
Email: jhartman@uab.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 3 or more
CCC Research Area: Genetics
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 5
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. John Rodgers
2. Ryan Mancinone
Title of Project: 41JH – Yeast phenomic analysis of a metabolism-specific growth-arresting P53 variant
Project Description:

P53 is a gene with functions of central importance to understanding cancer cell biology; it is a suppressor of many cancer types, meaning its loss of function is causal for malignancy. However, gain of function mutations in P53 have also been described. P53 functions as a transcription factor, but also as a non-transcription factor. The many biological roles of P53 are complicated and thus a systematic comprehensive analysis of these functions in a relatively simple experimental system would contribute new knowledge. Many genes can contribute to cancer, doing so in various combinations. The “multi-hit principle” of cancer biology raises critical questions about how mutations in different genes interact functionally? To investigate these questions, we are using budding yeast as a model; it is a single cell eukaryotic organism recognized for enabling the most powerful genetic analyses possible. For example, all of its ~6000 genes have been individually knocked out, and leveraging its vegetative haploid life cycle, we have been able to express P53 alleles in combination with loss of function alleles in all other genes to identify other genes in the cell that cooperate with P53 to regulate yeast growth. These “combination-dependent” phenotypes of cells are called interactions and, in this project, we are analyzing results from a phenomic experiment to understand this network of P53 gene interactions. p53 expression in wild type and mutant form has been assessed by quantitative growth phenotypes in two metabolic contexts (glycolysis and respiration), termed yeast phenomic analysis, which informs further about the individual p53 interactions, with the use of bioinformatics tools. We think these data could teach us specifically about non-transcriptional functions of p53, which would be novel direction for cancer biology.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 20, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
1 day or a few days as needed
Category of Project: Laboratory Research
Cancer topic: Multiple Cancer Sites
Does this project involve human subjects: No
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Understand, help design, perform and record experiment results.

2.

Analyze data, in communication with supervisors, to generate figures.

3.

Generate figures and summaries of results, with guidance from mentors, to help draft a manuscript.

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Computer and printer, Laboratory work bench space, Supplies needed to complete project, Equipment needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Genetics and Genomics, Microbiology, Molecular Biology

40SG – Development of an electronic health record based frailty classification for older adults with cancer

Status: Available
Intern:
Faculty Name: Smith Giri
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: UAB School of Medicine
Campus Address: 1600 7th Ave S
Telephone Number: (205) 638-2120
Email: smithgiri@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 0
CCC Research Area: Cancer Control & Population Science
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 2
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Deanna Clark dclark@peds.uab.edu
2. Grant Williams grwilliams@uabmc.edu
Title of Project: Development of an electronic health record based frailty classification for older adults with cancer
Project Description:

Work from our group and others have shown that frailty predicts toxicities and survival among older adults with cancer. However, there is no universal consensus on the optimal score and most traditional frailty score and time/resource intensive leading to limited applicability. Using a large electronic health derived database (Flatiron Health database), this project aims to utilize routinely obtained clinical information (laboratory findings, diagnosis codes and vital signs) to define a frailty score which will then be validated in external cohorts.

Project Status: Will begin on or before the CaRES student’s start date
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 31, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 27, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
0 – project will be fully virtual except for the required in-person checkpoint visits
Category of Project: Analytical/Statistical Research
Cancer topic: Multiple Cancer Sites
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

At the beginning of project, the intern will be given access to the EHR database on a shared network drive. Using a set of inclusion and exclusion criteria, the first step is to identify a group of eligible study cohort for this study.

2.

Once the eligibility cohort has been identified, the next steps would be to pull the relevant laboratory and diagnostic data available within the database. The selection of this data will be informed by a review relevant literature which will be conducted by the intern during this phase.

3.

Using an iterative process of variable selection and elimination, this step identifies the group of variables that are theoretically linked to frailty (as in step 2) and that are significantly predictive of patient outcomes including progression free and overall survival.

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: database, statistical software available within the shared drive
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Epidemiologic Methods, Literature Review Skills, SAS Programming, Statistics and Data Management advanced

39KH – Elucidating strategies to elicit oncologists’ recommendation to promote healthy eating behaviors among cancer survivors

Status: Available
Intern: Katelyn Johnson
Faculty Name: karina-halilova-md-mph-3
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: School of Medicine, Division of Preventive Medicine
Campus Address: 1717 11the Ave S
Telephone Number: (205) 934-7860
Email: karinahalilova@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 1
CCC Research Area: Cancer Control & Population Science
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 2
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Joshua Sewell, LMSW
2.
Title of Project: 39KH – Elucidating strategies to elicit oncologists’ recommendation to promote healthy eating behaviors among cancer survivors
Project Description:

Oncologists, as leaders in cancer survivorship care, could play in important role in promoting healthy eating behaviors among individuals with cancer. However, little is known about feasible, acceptable and sustainable strategies for delivering oncologist recommendations/supportive messages among overweight and obese cancer survivors. In this project, we will identify a feasible and acceptable strategy of delivering oncologists’ recommendations through individual interviews with oncologists.

CaRES intern is needed to provide assistance with interview data analysis and manuscript preparation.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 27, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
0 – project will be fully virtual except for the required in-person checkpoint visits
Category of Project: Clinical (Patient Care) Research
Cancer topic: Multiple Cancer Sites
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Provide assistance with qualitative data analysis using Nvivo software.

2.

Provide assistance with quantitative data analysis using SPSS or SAS software.

3.

Provide assistance with literature review and manuscript preparation. Assist research team with other research tasks.

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Supplies needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Behavioral Science/Psychiatry, Clinical Oncology, Literature Review Skills, Manuscript Preparation for Submission to a Journal, Obesity and Diet, Scientific Writing Skills, Statistics and Data Management, basic knowledge

38RW – Effects of Tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase I modulation on ovarian cancer cell drug sensitivity

Status: Available
Intern: Keana-Kelley Swanner
Faculty Name: robert-van-waardenburg
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Pharmacology and Toxicology
Campus Address: VH 155
Telephone Number: (205) 934-4572
Email: rvanwaar@uab.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 0
CCC Research Area: Cancer Biology & Immunology
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 25
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Evan Brettrager
2.
Title of Project: 38RW – Effects of Tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase I modulation on ovarian cancer cell drug sensitivity
Project Description:

The majority of the new cases of ovarian cancer diagnosed in the US present with advanced disease. The consequence of this late detection is that ovarian cancer accounts for 5% of female cancer related deaths, with a 5 year survival of only 45%. An additional factor that contributes to this low survival rate is the frequent recurrence of this disease, despite the fact that ~80% of ovarian cancers initially respond to first-line therapy (cytoreductive surgery and chemotherapy with a platinum or taxanes). Second-line therapies may include other platinum combination regimens, liposomal doxorubicin, taxanes, topotecan, PARP inhibitors and anti-angiogenic agents.
Tyrosyl-DNA phosphodiesterase I (Tdp1) is a eukaryotic DNA repair enzyme that removes DNA-adducts from the ends of a DNA strand break by hydrolyzing the phosphodiester linkage. Tdp1 removes DNA-adducts via a “hand-off” of the adducted DNA-end to one of two active site histidines (the nucleophilic His) of Tdp1, to for a covalent Tdp1-DNA reaction intermediate. Tdp1 subsequently releases or “auto-hydrolyzes” itself from this covalent DNA-complex using the second active site histidine (the general acid/base His). These DNA-adducts range from small oxidative damaged nucleotides, nucleoside analogs, and DNA-embedded ribonucleotides, to larger, more complex adducts, such as the protein-DNA covalent complexes formed by DNA topoisomerase I or II and Tdp1 itself, or DNA-protein/peptide crosslinks formed by failed Schiff-base reactions such as PARP1-DNA peptide crosslinks.
Previously, we reported that DNA topoisomerase I (Top1) cleavage of DNA containing platinum adducts increases the stability of a covalent Top1-DNA reaction intermediate in ovarian cancer cell. As a consequence, ovarian cancer cells treated with cisplatin exhibit elevated levels of Top1-DNA complexes while increased expression of Top1 enhances cell sensitivity to platinum agents. Queries of the TCGA database indicate that Tdp1 mRNA levels are elevated in ~43% (316 samples) of HGSOC. We determined that ~43% of 68 HGSOC tumor samples stained for Tdp1 indeed exhibit elevated Tdp1 protein levels compared to surrounding stromal cells. Subsequent Kaplan-Meier and Log-Rank plot analyses revealed a negative association of ovarian tumors with elevated Tdp1 levels and progression-free, and overall survival. Furthermore, we detected a similar Tdp1 expression variation in high-grade serous ovarian carcinomas (HGSOC) cell lines.
Our aim is to understand the role of Tdp1 expression in ovarian cancer cell proliferation and sensitivity to standard of care and other chemotherapeutic combinations. We will us the CRISPRi system to knock-down Tdp1 levels, and ectopic overexpression to elevate Tdp1 levels, to study the effects of Tdp1 protein levels on cell drug sensitivity and proliferation. For further biochemical characterization of Tdp1 function in cells, we will us previous characterized toxic and catalytic inactive Tdp1 mutant proteins to study Tdp1 as a potential novel drug target for the development of novel small molecules and potential new treatment options.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 17, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 6, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
More than 1 day per week (prior to start of the internship, gain appropriate waivers and approvals for the student to be on site)
Category of Project: Laboratory Research
Cancer topic: Ovary
Does this project involve human subjects: No
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Lab experiments including cell culture, drug sensitivity assays, transduction, plasmid isolation, protein isolation and analysis via immunoblotting.

2.

Literature research

3.

analysis of the obtained observaions/data

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Computer and printer, Laboratory work bench space, Supplies needed to complete project, Equipment needed to complete project
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Laboratory Skills, basic knowledge, Molecular Biology

37SB – Breast Cancer Survivor Study

Status: Filled – Geoffrey Bostany
Intern: Geoffrey Bostany
Faculty Name: smita-bhatia-3
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Pediatrics
Campus Address: 1600 7th Ave S, Lowder 500
Telephone Number: (205) 638-2122
Email: sbhatia@peds.uab.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 3 or more
CCC Research Area: Cancer Control & Population Science
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 1
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Wendy Landier
2. Liton Francisco
Title of Project: 37SB – Breast Cancer Survivor Study
Project Description:

Using data generated from a multidisciplinary breast cancer survivorship clinic, this study aims to describe the burden of morbidity borne by breast cancer survivors.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 27, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
More than 1 day per week (prior to start of the internship, gain appropriate waivers and approvals for the student to be on site)
Category of Project: Analytical/Statistical Research
Cancer topic: Breast
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

extract data using the data warehouse

2.

Use natural language processing to determine the outcomes experienced by the survivors

3.

Analyze the data

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space, Computer and printer
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Computer Programming, Literature Review Skills

36SG – Evaluation of Body Composition among older adults with lymphoid neoplasms

Status: Available
Intern:
Faculty Name: Smith Giri MD MHS
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: Division of Hematology/Oncology; Department of Medicine
Campus Address: 1600 7th Ave S, Lowder500
Telephone Number: (205) 638-2120
Email: smithgiri@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 0
CCC Research Area: Cancer Control & Population Science
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 2
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Deanna Clark dclark@peds.uab.edu
2. Grant Williams grwilliams@uabmc.edu
Title of Project: Evaluation of Body Composition among older adults with lymphoid neoplasms
Project Description:

Emerging data from our group and others have shown that differences in body composition can explain the heterogeneity in clinical outcomes among older adults with cancer with similar chronologic age. In 2019, we started a prospective registry of older adults 60 years and older with hematologic cancer treated at UAB. The purpose of this project to use routinely collected imaging data (CT or PET images) to analyze the body composition of patients with lymphoid neoplasms receiving care at UAB to a) document the variation in body composition in terms of muscle and adipose tissue compartments b) Understand its association with frailty, toxicities and survival by linking this data to our prospective registry. For this, we will use a licensed software (Slice-O-Matic v5.0) and use validated segmentation methods. Abundant training materials will be provided for the students to learn this software.

Project Status: Already up and running
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 15, 2021
Proposed End Date: August 15, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
0 – project will be fully virtual except for the required in-person checkpoint visits
Category of Project: Clinical (Patient Care) Research
Cancer topic: Lymphoma, Survivorship, Multiple Cancer Sites
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Using a self-guided learning using documents/tutorial videos/demonstration sessions, the student will use the first 2-3 weeks to get familiar with the Slice-O-Matics software and the accompanying ABACS semi-automation module. Software license will be provided at project initiation.

2.

Maintain a database in excel regarding the patient identification, and demographic characteristics of patients with available imaging and those whose imaging could be analyzed, along with output data including Skeletal Muscle Index, Subcutaneous and Visceral Adipose Tissue and Skeletal Muscle Density.

3.

Conduct basic descriptive analysis of the collected body composition data and prepare an abstract for poster presentation (preferred but not required)

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Software access
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Scientific Writing Skills, Statistics and Data Management, basic knowledge

35RA – Effect of Treatment Modalities and Patient Characteristics on Survival in Gynecologic Cancer

Status: Available
Intern: McKenzie Foxall
Faculty Name: rebecca-arend-2
Primary Faculty Appointment: UAB
UAB/HA Department: OB/GYN
Campus Address: 1700 6th Avenue South (Women & Infants Center), Room 10250
Telephone Number: (205) 934-4986
Email: rarend@uabmc.edu or Click to Send E-Mail
For how many summers have you served as a preceptor: 2
CCC Research Area: Experimental Therapeutics
Number of hours per week that the preceptor will personally supervise or work with the intern: 5
Other faculty, staff, or graduate students who may help to supervise the intern:
1. Carly Bess Scalise
2.
Title of Project: 35RA – Effect of Treatment Modalities and Patient Characteristics on Survival in Gynecologic Cancer
Project Description:

The primary objective of this study is to determine if various methods of treatment, including type and dose of chemotherapy, extent of surgical debulking (removal of as much of the tumor possible) and adjuvant radiation therapy affect progression free and overall survival in the primary treatment of gynecologic cancer. Our secondary objective is to determine if various methods of treatment, including type and dose of chemotherapy, surgical re-excision, and radiation therapy affect progression free and overall survival in recurrent gynecologic cancer.

Treatment options for gynecologic cancer are constantly changing. In the last decade, new methods of treatment have emerged which have proved to be efficacious. The decision to employ new therapeutic options and the decision to choose certain chemotherapy drugs for recurrence is a complex decision that combines patient factors, tumor characteristics, and provider experience. The UAB Division of Gynecologic Oncology treats hundreds of women with gynecologic cancer annually and serves a diverse patient population. It is prudent that we evaluate, in a retrospective fashion, the various treatment modalities and their effect on progression free and overall survival. Additionally, given the multiple patient factors in a diverse patient population, it is important to evaluate if certain patient characteristics affect disease treatment and survival. The results of this study will help us better counsel patients on their outcomes and may eventually affect the type of treatment selected for an individual patient.

This is a retrospective chart review with no participant contact. Utilizing the gynecology oncology clinic Redcap database, as well as gynecology oncology clinic billing records ,and the surgical pathology billing records, all patients who have a diagnosis of gynecologic cancer will be identified using ICD-9 codes. A chart review will be performed. Based on the inclusion and exclusion criteria as listed above, subjects will be identified and their medical records will be further reviewed for the purpose of this study.

Project Status: Will begin on or before the CaRES student’s start date
Location of Project: Birmingham, AL (UAB)
Proposed Start Date: May 3, 2021
Proposed End Date: July 23, 2021
Expected work schedule for intern: Flexible, intern can largely set his or her own schedule (as for students who are instructed how to proceed and are permitted to work independently with weekly guidance) and should contribute full-time effort.
Number of days that the student will be expected to come physically to UAB:
1 day or a few days as needed
Category of Project: Clinical (Patient Care) Research
Cancer topic: Cervix, Ovary, Uterus
Does this project involve human subjects: Yes
Does this project involve animal subjects: No
Duty:
1.

Literature and existing resources review

2.

Clinical data abstraction via chart review from the Electronic Medical Record

3.

Data analysis (with supervision) of factors affecting treatment and survival in gynecologic oncology patients

Preceptor will provide intern with access to the following: Office or desk space
Likelihood that intern will be included as an author on one or more publications related to this summer research project: Very likely
Areas in which the ideal candidates will have experience: Clinical Oncology, Literature Review Skills, Statistics and Data Management, basic knowledge